Election Board to Seek Advice Prior to Adopting Poll Worker Resolution


The Starke County Election Board plans to revisit a resolution intended to structure the duties of the Election Day inspectors.

During their meeting on Monday morning, a measure was considered allowing one inspector to oversee the operations of multiple voting precincts. Starke County adopted a similar measure in 2015, but changes to state statute limit the resolutions from being effective past the end of December for the previous year.

Starke County Clerk Vicki Cooley says this will be a recurring decision for the Election Board.

“What we did last year isn’t going to work for this year,” says Cooley. “So every year if we want to do this, we have to do a separate resolution.”

The Starke County Election Board is working under a bit of a timeline to see the resolution adopted, but have until voting begins to ensure it has been properly implemented.

Inspectors typically manage poll openings and closings on Election Day. Swearing-in poll workers, and handling some administrative paperwork, are also included in their duties. A bit of criticism was found when allowing one inspector to serve multiple precincts, considering 2016 is an election year with heavy voter turnout anticipated.

Election Board Member Dan Bridegroom says the resolution is also safeguard for the County.

“What this is for is, in case we have to go to one,” says Bridegroom. “Say something would happen to happen to one of [the inspectors], with this resolution, it’s legal to do that.”

The format allows Starke County to transition to vote centers in future years.

Language in the resolution regarding limitations on the number of Inspectors assigned to precincts in Center Township 1 and 2 brought additional questions. It was determined that the board will seek guidance from the Indiana Election Division on the matter prior to adoption. The matter was tabled for further consideration.